tv Newsmakers CSPAN February 6, 2011 6:00pm-6:30pm EST
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? >>?>?>?>?>?>?> > >> janet napolitano is the homeland secretary. we have two guests to question her. >> when you are lying there before you fall asleep, what are some of the things that you worry about in terms of threats of security, and what specifically are you doing to make sure that those concerns do not ever come true? agagqgqgqgqgqg
>> we are always worried about it. it is something that could be biological as well as more traditional explosives, so we are concerned about terrorism. also, the department is so huge, and it can be whatever the threat of the day happens to be or the event that is coming up that we need to make sure it is especially secure. for example, this week, we had this huge, monster storm that developed out of a cold front coming from the north, warm air from the south, and it ultimately covered about 100 million people, the worst storm of the season, we hope, anyway. it runs the gamut. >> in terms of terrorism to the united states, there is the nuclear threat and how that was something particular worries some.
dirty bombs or something. is there a threat that is most worrisome that you must think about? >> i do not look get it in that fashion. i think there is a whole host of things that could happen, some more likely than others. in this kind of situation, you have to not only think about what has been happening, but constantly pushing our department to make sure they have been thinking through these things.
o>o>o?o?o?o>o>o?o>o>o?o?o?o?o> >> was on the other front? >> countering extremism, countering islamic extremism, as it were, it is looking at working with communities. law enforcement methods. you build bridges to communities. we support local police departments, in particular, in terms of the work that they do. we think that is probably the best way to protect the country. >> and what is the way to engage with the muslim community of the united states and talk about these issues rather than alienating them? >> and justin gauge. it is meeting with leaders, in communities, showing that you
are not painting with a broad brush. that we recognize that members of the muslim community are part of the solution, and the violent extremists, those who are being recruited into al qaeda, those organizations, they are the few and not the many, and so, we meet regularly with leaders. we are dealing with this kind of as you would using -- using traditional police methods. also, asking the american people to be part and parcel of their own security. >> i imagine this is creating a large inflow of information.
what is the capacity to deal with the information? >> well, let's make it very clear. it is not across the country. it is unspecified jurisdictions, tied into pre-existing tip lines or other lines where there are trained operators. we also put in place where we have suspicious activity. that is a system that we have developed, working with law enforcement but also with the civil liberties community on how you handle these, and we can share information. you're really talking about two different things. individuals, and this is a law
enforcement issue. >> perhaps some type of the conspiracy. individuals as opposed to large groups of people. what specifically is the department doing to make sure -- to identify a single individual acting as opposed to in a group? what are you doing to make sure that you're going to be in front in the next episode? >> it is tough, eric. it is very difficult to keep them from preventing an act of terrorism -- performing an act of terrorism. really, the most effective
things we can do are the things that i just described to you, which is asking individuals to be aware of their surroundings, have a police trained to recognize suspicious activity. that could be a tipoff to something that is going to happen. and then a third thing, which is to make sure that our communities are prepared to be resilient, that our first responders are trained to get in there and deal with something like a lone shooter. >> secretary napolitano, given what is happening in the middle east right now, particularly egypt, possibly in jordan and in yemen, as well, partners of the united states, has vigilance increased over flights coming in from these countries because of what is going on? >> well, we have a whole network
of things we do to keep track of their traffic around the world, also in a way that maximizes the situation when someone could be a terrorist. there were protocols and place that we think are sufficient. what we are doing is assisting the state department. we have the whole customs machinery that is part of homeland security, so to make sure that americans to war over in that part of the world can do so quickly and smoothly. -- who are over in that part of
the world. but -- >> there is the data. are you satisfied with about people traveling from europe and north africa into the united states? >> i think so. we want to make it more specific. you're talking about millions of travel records per day. making it easier, more uniform, more standard. negotiating the agreement. what it basically means is advanced passenger information. negotiating the agreement with
the eu right now. in brussels, today, they are meeting on that negotiation. >> the most popular target, if you can call it that, of terrorists who want to hurt the united states, you do not really have the mandate for foreign countries to expect cargo, so what are you doing to make sure that cargo is as secure as checked baggage? >> cargo is a much more complicated environment. cargo comes from a lot more places than passengers do. you have got to deal with aviation. you have got to deal with maritime. you have to deal with land, so you have all three types of ports, the three types of places. you have hundreds of countries.
and you have an economic need to be able to move cargo in a smooth and efficient manner. it affects the cost of goods and jobs. one of the things that we had been working on actually prior to last october is now coming into fruition, and that is a worldwide global supply chain initiatives. what does that mean? it means security from the time it enters the place of manufacture to the time it ultimately reaches the hands of the consumer. it may go through seven different countries and pass different borders, and it may go by land and air, so it is very complicated. the international maritime
organization and others. hopefully, between now and june, we can agree upon a standard set of requirements for shipman's, literally around the world. -- requirements for shipments. >> secretary nicole itano, so in that global supply chain, where was the breakdown when a toner cartridge is shipped from yemen to chicago, what happened wrong in the supply chain? >> again, i would not presume that anything happened wrong. a potential bomb in a toner cartridge. but it did demonstrate that we have good enough relations with countries around the world to share information that we were able to get information about it and find those two devices before they could have been detonated.
and that kind of intelligence sharing is part of it. they did get on flights. what we are doing immediately afterwards is put a groundhog in cargo in somalia and so forth until we can put in place enhanced requirements for cargo, things like toner cartridges that way over 16 ounces -- weigh over 16 ounces. comesf the world's cargo into the united states, much smaller number of places then it
starts out at. there are some the chip lots of cargo on a routine basis. -- that ship lots of cargo. we are hoping to turn this into trusted shipper categories and also use new technologies or types of inspections based on what kind of a shipper we are talking about. those are the kinds of things that will go into the supply chain initiative, and, again, that is underway right now. "newsmakers"span's program. our guest is homeland security secretary, janet napolitano. with us is a correspondent from the "the los angeles times," brian bennett, and a correspondent for a "the new york times," eric lipton.
>> the department says you're hoping to have 1000 of these new technologies in by the end of the year. does the budget allow you to meet that target? >> i think we will be able to meet that target. we are already pirating the next wave of software, and we are always moving to try to address the concerns that were raised. the reason we do pat-downs is because of the intelligence and the threats. there is evidence of the fact that our adversaries understand that explosives hidden in certain areas can be found
because they know of our sensitivities, quite frankly, and we recognize that and respect that, and so, what we have done is with the new technologies, we have a much better way of finding nonmetallic substances. magnetometers, obviously, cannot find those. there is a very small number of passengers. what we found through thanksgiving and christmas and the holiday travel period is that the passengers themselves, they did not like it, but once they understood that this was designed to deal with their security, it is the security of their fellow passengers on a plane, -- >> there was not a huge number. >> i was concerned that the lines would bog down. in fact, they moved along quite
smoothly. one of the things we want to do is keep involving the public, be it passengers, be it people in neighborhoods, and people need to be involved in their own security. so when i talk about see something, say something, and i talk about being alert about your surroundings and airports, that is everybody just being situational korea where. >> we have about eight minutes left with our guest, secretary to nicole itano -- being situationally aware. >> we have about eight minutes left with our guest, secretary nicole itano -- nicole itano -- napolitano. >> the response shows that the
department was referring some of these requests to political appointees, to review what had been asked for. reviews that were delaying the process, and so much for that they were missing deadlines. this does not seem to be an appropriate step, not a normal part of it, the review process. as they understand, as soon as the ap learned about it, you stopped it. what about this request? >> i do not think we were doing political reviews. i think, to the contrary, there was a huge backlog. in part because we are so big and so complicated, we are 22 and some agencies. there are thousands upon thousands of backlog requests, and we wanted to move them and get rid of the back log and see if the requests were overlapping and so forth, so what we were able to do in the first 18 months or so was to, a, answer
more requests than ever before, b, get that thing back down. >> there were political appointees to review, and there wasn't enough traffic showing that there were some police that were concerned. this was delaying the response. why was the reform process taking place? >> we are more than happy to cooperate and give them responses, and we will deal with it. >> was this politically motivated? there is a feel that was politically motivated. >> i think it was management
oriented. >> turning to immigration, the department has reported record numbers of deportations and the last few years, and there has been some reporting as to whether or not the department moved to some numbers around or did some tricky accounting to come up with this rising deportation. >> in other words, we double counting some people? >> yes. >> the answer is no. we are returning as big boat, as it were, to make sure that we're focused on those who are in jails and prisons who are also in the country illegally, not exclusively so, but as a priority. >> over the summer, the administration deployed 1200 national guardsmen, and they are
still in place. they will be standing down at the end of the year. there will be others hired over the course of the next year. >> we have more resources at that southwest border than ever before. technology, infrastructure. we have more on the way. we have more in the hiring and clearing process right now, and we see the effects that the numbers going down are dropping like stone. the numbers we need to go up are also going up. that is very different than it was two years ago. we want to sustain those efforts. we are by no means a done. there are some other things we will be adding to this structure, to our southwest border initiative. the results are very, very good. >> secretary napolitano, there
are more people that you will be dealing with during the 112 congress. peter king of homeland security. are you planning to testify on peter king's hearing? >> absolutely. i will be there. representative king, the new chair, was the ranking member of my first two years. we work together well, i think, overall on the issue is. the issues are not republican or democratic issues. it is clear about anything. it should be clear about safety and security. it is something we all share and have an obligation.
>> how to explain the relationship with issa -- how would you? >> we will cooperate and provide information to them. i'd think the more intimation we have, the more they will realize the challenges >> we have time for a few questions each. eric lipton. >> creating what people called a virtual fence. this is like the third iteration to use technology and equipment to better protect the border. you have announced a new program. what are you going to do to make sure this is not another waste of hundreds of millions of dollars? how do you know this is actually how you're going to mate a difference? >> well, it will not be a cookie
cutter approach. there was a program that was over budget and behind schedule. it depends on which set when you're in. different types of cameras, those things. we know operationally they produce results. >> you realize that is what they said when they started fbi net. >> it sounded good. you get a couple of years into it, and you realize that you cannot meet the standards as advertised.
>> using an employment verification system called e- verify, do you think that the u.s. federal government should have requirements? if employees are in the country illegally? >> the federal government is doing it with contractors, and i believe we have to create a culture of compliance. they have to comply with our national immigration laws. otherwise, they will be creating a demand for illegal labor, and i do not care how many millions spent on the border. -- spend on that border. we will continue to have a
problem. employer verification on illegal residency, employees, and control. >> why not make e-verify mandatory? >> i do not know if the administration will offer that as a piece of legislation. wheatfield e-verify system every day -- we feel that the e-verify system is more robust every day. it does add cultural compliance on top of it. >> finally, secretary, we want to go back to your first answer, where you said that jurisdiction is so huge. is the department of homeland security organized correctly, and is it too huge for one department? >> it is organized correctly in the sense that we have taken all of those departments that were merged and put them under kind
of a five-part framework that really allows us to manage counter-terrorism, border security, land, marine, and air, and forcing immigration laws. -- enforcing immigration laws. the mission areas, and increasing benchmarks, that is the way to move it forward. >> secretary janet napolitano has been our guest on "newsmakers." we will be right back. brian, what did you learn from the secretary? >> well, one issue i learned is that there is not going to be a mandatory employer verification program requiring all of the employers to check the immigration status. i asked her about that.
>> were you surprised by that answer? >> no, i was not surprised. >> eric lipton? >> isc submenu is better versed -- i see someone who is better versed. therefore more able to answer questions more comfortably than on in her tenure, when she got into a little trouble with some of remarks in response to the detroit bomber and was a bit of a despair -- embarrassment for the department. i think she is better versed in the whole breadth of this enormous and dependent -- in this enormous entity. this enormous entity.